JOURNAL

Why Social Movements Matter

Seattle protest by indigenous and other activists in solidarity with Standing Rock, September 2016. By   John Duffy

Seattle protest by indigenous and other activists in solidarity with Standing Rock, September 2016. By John Duffy

These are terrifying times to live in. Scientists and extreme weather alike underline how little time we have left to avert absolutely devastating climate change, while states put all their power behind fracking, tar sands and coal – and expanding airports. A new far-right authoritarianism has taken power in the US and India, Hungary and Italy, Turkey and soon perhaps Brazil, allied to vicious assaults on women, on migrants and ethnic minorities, on LGBTQ+ people and on political dissent. Social inequalities continue to grow, as new kinds of corporate robber baron stalk the earth and accumulate vast wealth at the expense of the working poor, while the poorest and most vulnerable are targetted for yet more cuts and sanctions. A permanent state of emergency has spread across the planet, justifying innumerable petty wars abroad and a siege mentality “at home”. And the list goes on….

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